Hexagon challenge

You all know by now how much I love hexagons and am in the process of making a full size double bed quilt from some using the Grandmother’s Garden pattern.

Well we were really thrilled to come across some wonderful miniature needlework during our recent visit to Nunnington, they have a series of miniature rooms that are part of their collection.

Nunnington -miniature needlework 3

Rather than being one dolls’ house these are lots of different rooms like this grand staircase in the picture above and most contained amazing examples of miniature cross stitch and needlepoint.

Nunnington -miniature needlework 2

When Ellie was little we bought her a dolls’ house and spent many years furnishing it and I stitched rugs and and made bedding for it. When she went to University we gave it to the family across the road who had 8 girls and I am sure they must have loved playing with it.

Nunnington -miniature needlework 4

Now she has her own house she has decided she would like to have another dolls’ house and has bought an antique cabinet to house it in, similar to the many we have seen in historic houses.

I said I would make some rugs etc for her but we also came across this miniature hexagon bed quilt in the display so I am going to attempt something like this for her. I have no idea if it has been paper pieced or not. I can’t imagine how you can cut paper and fold them that small as each must be only 1/4 cm across. I may well have to make my pieces bigger!

Nunnington -miniature needlework 6

There were also miniature sewing tools and work in progress like this needlepoint frame and lace making pillow and tatting.

Nunnington -miniature needlework 1

Nunnington -miniature needlework 5

Nunnington -miniature needlework 7

All wonderful stuff and so cute! I have been looking for information and as usual there is lots of inspiration on Pinterest so after Yarndale will have a go at a mini, mini, mini quilt. I have found a site that sells tiny papers as well!

I found this amazing mini quilt show on Pinterest, no idea who created it but look at the tiny loveliness here.

Mini quilt show

This weekend we have the Steampunk event at Lincoln, sadly our medieval show has been cancelled due to structural problems at the site BUT that means two whole days to enjoy the Steampunk and marvel at all the lovely costumes. My very talented daughter has been working on a fabulous costume for this year so all will be revealed next week!

Take care and thanks for visiting.

Nunnington needlework

We had a great mini trip up North, the first place we visited was Nunnington Hall in North Yorkshire, a lovely stone house dating back to the 12th century surrounded by beautiful countryside.

Not only was the house beautiful with lots of light and airy paneled rooms as the house has been displayed as it would have been in the 1920s, but there were also some wonderful examples of needlework connected to the family.

Firstly this Durham quilt, hand quilted by the last owner’s grandmother.

Nunnington -quilt 1

Nunnington -quilt 3

Nunnington -quilt 2

Then these stunning Jacobean crewelwork panels in the bedroom, they have been restored by the Trust, mainly to mend the linen backing, but the colours are still wonderful even though they are faded.

Nunnington -crewelwork bedroom

Nunnington -crewelwork detail

Panels this size must have taken so long to make, they were originally made for a bed.

There was also a very pretty needlepoint chair cover and some samplers dating from 1785 and 1835 with the makers’ names on.

Nunnington -needlepoint

Nunnington -sampler 1

Nunnington -sampler 2

This is not a good picture of the sampler due to the low light but here is a better one from the National Trust Collections site here. It was stitched by 10 year old Betsy Pickard in 1835 as a firescreen and is beautifully done.

Another thing that I really liked were the little cross stitched signs, someone has been working very hard to theme the information given.

Nunnington -label 1

Nunnington -label 2

There was also some very impressive other needlework that I will share with you in a later post, I absolutely loved it and it has given me an interesting challenge that I will share with you then.

Today will be mainly finishing off items for Yarndale, I have a basket and needlebook in progress and there is always more embroidering of sheep to be done!

Take care and thanks for visiting.

If you want to get ahead …..

I had a lovely time in Spain, no photos for you except this one of wine during a meal at one of our favourite beach bars as the rest of the time was spent being very hot and so sitting in the shade or being in various pools and the sea.

Spain - August - wine

It was a lovely time with family but confirmed my already fairly certain view that I was born for colder climates. I really admire all of the people working there in that heat, I could do nothing more than sit with a cold drink mopping my brow!

A quick turnaround saw me going to my first ever proper festival, Farmer Phil’s in the gorgeous Shropshire countryside. I loved it, and will be back next year for longer so we can take advantage of the lovely area and go for walks. Look there was even blue sky.. in England!

Actually the weather was very good for August with only rain on the Sunday night which necessitated a much appreciated tow out of the muddy field.

I stayed with my sister Jacky who has recently bought a new camper van, I would dearly love to own one when I finally learn to drive so we spent some time wandering round looking at all of the lovely ones at the festival.

Farmer Phils 1 - tent

I was staying in Jacky’s pop up tent next to her van and we had a very lovely time catching up as we have not seen each other for a while, during which she has become a grandmother! Seriously we are not old enough for this sort of thing 🙂

Loved the music, lots of folk and folk/punk bands and great musicians generally and discovered some  new people to listen to. Just lovely to be in the sun, not too hot though 😉 , drinking delicious rhubarb cider and enjoying the event.

Farmer Phils 6 - stage

I think my favourites over the whole weekend were Nick Parker who is a brilliant songwriter and Bar Steward Sons of Val Doonican who have some brilliant comedy rewrites of classics such as Lady in Red (Lady in Greggs – which for those of you outside the UK is a sandwich shop and bakery) and Beyonce’s Single Ladies which they have turned into a wonderful song about Dinner Ladies.

Farmer Phils 7 - sons of VD

We also had a great baked Camembert and cheese platter at the Cheezy Vinyl bar where platters are old records, that was delicious and will definitely be going back next year.

Farmer Phils 12- Cheezy

Farmer Phils 13- Cheezy

As well as the music my other favourite things were festival outfits. There were some gorgeous outfits, some brilliant fancy dress and lots of bright colours, face painting and general loveliness.I think the combination of the rainbow unicorn head dress and the jacket with spoons on below was one of my faves.

I am going to work on some more lovely stuff for me to wear next year, definitely need more of the floaty summer hippy chic that lots of people were wearing! Oh and I also need some nice boots rather than my very old walking boots, not sure which of these are my fave so far.

As the title of my post says, if you want to get ahead….. get a hat so I treated myself to two new top hats for festival wear, I love top hats and have decided to wear them lots at events and wanted some that I could further embellish.

Farmer Phils 14- Purple hat

The purple one is great for wearing with my flower crowns as here and I am planning to make some removable bands for it as well and I will add some more bling and lace to the black one.

Farmer Phils 15- Black hat

Ellie and I are off again this weekend, I know, will the fun never stop! We are going to see a fab live spectacular show, Kynren, up in the North East with a little National Trust visit en route. Then it is only one week until the combined Lincoln Steam Punk weekend and medieval show where I shall get some nice pics of my newly lace embellished jacket and boots for you.

In between all this gadding about I am also still working on things for Yarndale, have got little to show you that is finished but have been embroidering and paper piecing for the final pouches and needlebooks.

Have a good weekend ahead, whatever you are doing and see you next week. Thanks for visiting as always.

 

 

Unexpected productivity

What do they say about,’the best laid plans of mice and men…’? I was not able to go to Peveril after all as my lovely son has been poorly so I stayed home to look after him.

This has given me three more days in the craft room though so I have been quite productive again. Fingers crossed I will be leaving for Spain tomorrow as he is much better and will be taking some more sheep with me to embroider but have managed to complete two more pouches and two more bags.

July extra pouches and bags 1

As you know I have been experimenting with Dresdens and these ones use some of my vintage crochet motifs in the middle.

I was short of linen so came up with the idea of using some fabric for a contrast bottom for the pouch and loved it so did the same with the pink one as well.

The baskets have lovely vintage print sewing themed fabric, both are by Makower and can be found at several suppliers by searching for it by description.

I particularly love the pale one, reminds me of my grandmother and all of her patterns when I was little. I now need to make some little pincushions to go with these.

July extra pouches and bags 2

July extra pouches and bags 3

Links for the tutorials and patterns for the pouches are bags are in the previous post if you want them.

July extra pouches and bags 4

July extra pouches and bags 5

I also finished two needlebooks, a hexagonal one to match the pincushions that I made last year and a rectangular one, both with some more of my pieced Liberty stars that I make on a regular basis. I do love a bit of therapeutic English Paper Piecing!

I have two more of these in construction as well. I always like to put a few pretty pins in as a nice gift for the person who buys them.

This puts me well ahead of schedule for Yarndale, hopefully I will get chance to make a few more things when I return and then it will be time to start the Christmas sewing! I think I will be experimenting with Dresden for ornaments this year as I do love them and I have some gorgeous fabric in my scraps drawer.

Well will love you and leave you for the second time and hope, in the nicest possible way that I do not see you all again for a couple of weeks!

Have a good time and thanks for visiting.

 

Productivity

Well I surprised even myself with the amount I got completed this weekend.Look at all this bag and pouch loveliness!

July bags and pouches 1

I have had the makings of most of this ready for a while. I have been working on the embroidery with sayings over the last few months and have made a large pile of the vintage embroidery blocks for use in lots of things but I was really on a roll this weekend.

July bags and pouches 3

It helped that I started first thing in the morning and just kept going, alternating cutting out with machining as my sciatica does not enjoy long stretches at the machine.

July bags and pouches 5

July bags and pouches 6

I used the bag tutorial from Emkie Designs as before, I am getting  quite proficient with these now and don’t even need to look at the instructions any more.I think this one is my favourite, if it doesn’t sell that is fine, if it does will have to make one for me!

I like using the lacy zips as well as that is a lot quicker than adding zipper tabs. I have ordered a few more zips from Buddly Crafts to top up my stockpile.

July bags and pouches 10

July bags and pouches 11

The basket is the One Hour Basket tutorial again, I zig zag appliqued the vintage embroidery blocks on before construction.

The Liberty fabric handles were a happy accident, I cut the original handles too narrow and was wondering what to do when I had the bright idea of putting some patterned fabric for the top. I think it looks really good 🙂

July bags and pouches 14

July bags and pouches 16

This one is a gift for one of my cousin’s little girl who I am going to see when I go to Spain next week. I have used one of hexagons my friend Helen gifted me a while ago, I do like the contrast of it against the dark blue linen.

July bags and pouches 2

I have two more pouches in construction, using Dresdens and some vintage crochet and then I shall have to think about how many more I can make before mid Sept. Would love to do more of the sheep embroidery ones but they take a while to stitch.

I know mid Sept seems a long time away but I luckily do not have a free weekend until then. I am away at Peveril Castle for an event this weekend, then off to Spain for 10 days (I shall be mainly standing in a pool as it is about 40 degrees there at the moment!) and then off to a festival with my sister. Excellent amount of lovely things to look forward to, I am a very lucky girl 🙂

So I shall see you all in a couple of weeks when I get back, have fun whatever you are doing and thanks for visiting.

 

1471 all over again!

Apologies for my absence, I came back from Tewkesbury and had so many lovely pictures to show you and then changed internet service and it all went badly wrong so I have had no internet for a while.

Thankfully after much frustration with customer service phonelines, (no I cannot go to your web help pages to sort this out as I have no internet! No I cannot take a picture of the hub as I have no smartphone!), a lovely man came and fixed the problem this morning so I am back.

It was a brilliant Battle of Tewkesbury once again, very hot both days so we were melting but luckily everything went ahead and everyone had a fantastic time.Here are friends Richard and Dave off to battle.

Richard and Dave at Tewks - small

Here are me in the blue dress, Ellie in dark and light pink and Kerry just behind me in green marching onto the battle on Sunday.
Watercarrying at Tewks

Here is the prince escorting his mother, Margaret of Anjou onto the battlefield, the picture below is of her and the ladies of her court.

Tewks Prince and Queen - small

Tewks Queen's court

And here is Lord Somerset, one the main Lancastrain leaders and his contingent.

Rupert and Allan at Tewks-small

This is king marching onto the battlefield, our friend Dave’s banner is part of the party – the white with black stripe and diamonds, don’t they look magnificent all together!

Tewkesbury Dave's banner - small

Here is my friend Mike who I interviewed about guns at Tatton in action on the battlefield.

Mike Gunning at Tewksbury - small

The ladies’ costumes were once again stunning and thanks to the miracles of the internet, (i.e. other people’s Facebook posts), I have some lovely images for you.Here are the ladies of the court marching to the beheading.

Tewkesbury Trial procession - small

Tewkesbury trial 2

And here is the King and his entourage at the trial expressing disbelief at the rebel’s excuses.

This is my wonderfully talented friend Kat with the most gorgeous new head dress.She was kind enough to let me interview her for my research as well.

Tewks Kat Richard and Dave

Thank you so much to all of the people that take pictures of us in kit and share them, it is brilliant to have a record of events when we can’t have cameras with us.I don’t know everyone who took these as some were re-shared but thanks to Celtic Hammer for some of these.

My steam punk outfit for Saturday night worked well. I don’t have any really good pictures of it as by the time we had been to the beheading and to the beautiful Compline service at the church and got changed it was very dark. I will get some better pictures in daylight in August.

I did take some pictures of my own as I was out of kit on Sunday morning doing some more of my doctoral research so these are from various living history camps.

Tewks - encampment 1

Tewks - encampment 2

I was talking to and videoing lots of people just doing what they do at re-enactment, talking to the public, playing games, cooking, mending their kit.

Tewks - encampment 3

Tewks - encampment 4

Tewks - encampment 5

It was really lovely to just wander, re-enactors are a great bunch of people, so enthusiastic and I am loving doing the research with them.

I have another quiet weekend ahead so will be continuing with making bags and pouches for Sarah’s Yarndale stall as well as a present for one of my younger relatives. I have recently discovered Vikings and am enjoying binge watching that while stitching. Not as much pretty costume in that but some of it is very lovely, especially now we have got to the French court and I am really enjoying the series, particularly the women’s roles. Lagertha is my new hero, very impressed with her.

I found this lovely image of her on the web and this funny so thought I would leave you with these.

Largetha - Vikings

Lagertha - quoteTake care and thanks for visiting.

 

 

Happy reading, happy making!

Books make me so happy, I love reading and I am always buying more of them. Mostly from charity shops and often find real bargains, especially in the lovely National Trust second hand books shops.

I also love buying craft books that are either published by bloggers or promoted by them as then you know that you are getting something really well worth it and that you are helping someone who is really dedicated to what they do.

My birthday present book was one that was recommended by Sedef of Down Grapevine Lane  a while ago and I added it straight away to my wish list.

It is called Happy Flower Quilts by Atsuko Matsuyama  and it is very much a ‘me’ sort of book. So much cuteness and use of little flowery prints!

Happy Flower Quilts 1

I would have bought the book just on the strength of the Dresden pincushion pattern as I have still not got over how cute they are but there are so many other lovely ideas in here, especially for a person with lots of small female relatives! I love the sewing case with its spool patchwork designs.

I really like the 3D flower applique on this little purse and the Honey Bee block would be lovely as a bag design as well. The book comes with full size templates for everything and I can’t wait to have time to play with some of these designs.

I have finished all of my steampunk outfit and am off to Tewkesbury Medieval Festival this coming weekend where as well as enjoying dressing up I will be doing lots of research for my doctorate as it is the biggest event in Europe so I am planning to do lots of videoing of the wonderful things that people are doing.

Take care and thanks for visiting.